Author : Kate Thornborough

“It’s ready, sir. Right this way.” said the visibly nervous neuroscientist, guiding the heavily decorated general to the sterile testing chambers. The rooms were small and each contained a test subject, a bed, and a small stereo. The subject paced around the stereo, occasionally throwing a questioning glance at it. The scientist and general stood behind the sound proofed Plexiglas window, its tint preventing the subject from noticing them.

“So, how does the little bugger work? In English, please.” The general said gruffly.

“Have you ever heard of the phrase ‘lost in the music’? It’s like that, only they never find their way out again.” said the scientist, puffing up with pride. Seeing the general’s confused look, the scientist tried again. “Every song has waves, and the brain absorbs the waves to interpret the song. Well, we ‘poisoned’, so to speak, those waves, so when they are absorbed, the brain will implode, thus leading to the victim’s fatal demise. What exactly the person experiences during their last moments of death is unknown.”

“Interesting. Where did you find the test subjects?”

“We picked up the homeless, druggies, hookers, and criminals from across the nation. All of them are orphans, and are insignificant. No one will notice their disappearance. We treat them well, and give them a warm, safe place to live, and for that they are grateful.”

“Well, let’s see this baby in action. I’ve got a meeting in an hour.”

Marcus circled the stereo cautiously. He used to be a small-time bank robber, but he was unlucky. Thankfully, they promised to forgive his crimes if he allowed them to use him like a lab rat. He agreed, and was put through tests, measuring his IQ, taking CAT scans, and studying his reflexes. Then, they gave him the stereo.

Giving in to his curiosity, he pressed the play button, and he couldn’t help but submerse himself in the lullaby, closing his eyes and smiling softly.

He was standing, and could see rows of sheet music. They swirled around him, brushing against him gently. Then, a note changed, and the sheets whipped against his face, quickly drawing blood. He cried out, and fell to his knees in pain. They wrapped around his head, squeezing it like a boa constrictor. He tried to get them off, but they just squeezed harder. Crying for the last time, he closed his eyes, and heard the music, faintly, it’s sweet melody wishing him a good-bye.

“Wow. That was quick.” The general said, barely keeping the surprise out of his voice.

“I know. So, how many copies do you want?”

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